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Twinkie rides again

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Recently, an heir to the royal throne of England was born; the city of Detroit filed for bankruptcy; Ryan Braun was suspended from Major League Baseball for steroid use; and New York City mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner did … er, well, ... stuff … again. Does it make me a bad person that I think that all of these stories pale in comparison to the comeback of the Twinkie? It sounds sad, but alas, it's true.

Now I usually don't like to do a lot of research when I write a column, and this one is not much different. But for a story as important as this, that touches so many lives, I thought that a little fieldwork might be warranted.

The fine folks at Wikipedia recount the story that Twinkies were invented in River Forest, Ill., on April 6, 1930, by James Alexander Dewar. From there, Twinkies went on to become one of the world's most popular and profitable snack treats.

However, on May 4, 2012, Hostess, the parent company of Twinkies, filed for bankruptcy citing one of their problems as a loss of sales due to a nation that wanted to eat healthier. (Stupid health craze.)

On Nov. 12, 2012, they ended Twinkie production in the United States. If you read the book of Revelations close enough, I believe that this might be one of the signals that the end of days is near. I don't know why William and Kate would want to bring a future King of England into a Twinkie-less world.

Growing up, some of my best memories involved a Twinkie. I can remember the commercials where Twinkie The Kid would run around on my parents black and white RCA television set. I'd be watching the adventures of the seven stranded castaways and he would appear in his 10-gallon hat, bandana and boots brandishing his lasso reminding me that I was hungry. Twinkie The Kid knew what he was doing.

I remember Twinkies being used as a form of currency at the school lunch table. If you brought your lunch to school, and your mother loved you enough to put a Twinkie in your lunchbox, you had the ability to trade for practically anything off of anyone else's tray if the urge hit you. Twinkie owners were the George Steinbrenners of the elementary school. They made the rules and lived like rock stars.

Throughout my life, Twinkies and other wonderful Hostess products have always been there for me when I have needed them most. When Lieutenant Colonel Henry Blake's plane was shot down over the Sea of Japan on "M*A*S*H," Twinkie was there to help me pull through. When James Evans died on "Good Times," Twinkie was there. Even all of those times when I was watching "Happy Days" trying to figure out what happened to Richie's big brother Chuck, Twinkie was there. Twinkies have helped me through some of life's most traumatic moments, most of them imaginary.

So you can understand my unrestrained joy when Twinkies rose like a sugar-filled phoenix out of the ashes of junk food death and filled store shelves once again on July 15, 2013. A day that should forever be honored as a national day of remembrance known as Twinkie Day and celebrated much like we do Ground Hog Day and Elvis' birthday.

And it's not just Twinkies that came back into our lives. There are also Ding Dongs, Cupcakes, Donettes, Mini Muffins, Coffee Cakes, Cinnamon Rolls, Honey Buns, Fruit Pies, Zingers, Sno Balls, Suzy Q's, and my personal favorite, Ho Hos. I lost another notch on my belt just thinking about it.

The news of the Twinkies triumphant return makes my heart skip a beat. But then again, that could just be the cardiac arrhythmia caused by the 135 glorious calories of golden sponge cake and creamy filling.

You can contact Wallace at gwallace@bcrnews.com. You can follow him on his blog at http://gregwallaceink.blogspot.com.

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